Melbourn I vs Peterborough II
Weds 12th December
Melbourn lost 2-3
Melbourn 1sts were handed a home tie against Peterborough ‘2nds’ in the first round of the Light Blue Travel Cup.
The visitors, who are now Peterborough’s highest team following the withdrawal of their 1sts from Division 1, currently sit third in the Division 2 standings but with players from the higher squad to draw in they were a live and dangerous prospect in the Cup, particularly as our team was missing a couple of regulars for injury/schoolwork reasons.
That meant Jan was playing 5. He was up against Alec Sarkissian, and made a good start edging a close and nervy opener and then winning the second more comfortably. Time for a 3-0? Not if Alec could help it. He started the third fast, building a 5-1 lead that Jan wasn’t able to recover. The fourth was closer, but Alec was still in front on the court and levelled. There was little between the players at any point in the decider as points were exchanged. Jan had the first match ball at 10-9, but it was well saved. He earned himself another with a return volley winner and completed the win on the second go over.
Next door Dan (4) was taking on Justin Snart, who proved too be a strong player with good accuracy and crispness in his shots. That led to Dan scrambling as he struggled for consistency and maintaining a strong position and high position on the court. Dan battled as gamely as he could and forced it to four, but eventually was worned down by Justin’s persistence and lost 3-1.
Mark (3) followed Dan on court, taking on Ady Payne. Ady is another with a reliable game, and this swiftly turned into a yo-yo battle as Mark was unable to change the pace of the match, getting drawn in to hitting too hard which was more playing his opponents game than his own. Despite that ark was still right in the contest as games were shared as the match went all the way to a decider, which in turn went to a tie-break. Both players had match ball opportunities before Ady got another at 13-12 which he converted for the win.
Vinod (2) was up against Michael Catling. The first game saw Michael mostly in front, having Vinod reacting to what he was doing rather than otherwise, and that was reflected in the scoreline. However Vinod settled, pushed himself further up the court and bean to dictate the play, moving Michael around to the various corners. With this the pattern began to change, Vinod taking the second. Michael was getting frustrated (at himself) with the turnaround, but Vinod was relentless and won the next two by similar margins to claim a very accomplished 3-1 success.
That levelled the match up at two strings each making the top one the decider. However in that Ed (1) had a very tough task against Dan McGinn, a level 3 coach and sometime PSA Tour player. Perhaps, knowing what he was up against, Ed lacked a little self-belief that he could win as though the rallies were good and Ed won some of them, he never truly ruffled Dan’s feathers as the visitor eventually cruised it 3-0 to send Peterborough through to the Quarter-Finals.
Skipper Mark commented “This was a very tight match that we could have won on another evening. However, we didn’t quite all manage to play at our absolute best and that was decisive. Good luck to Peterborough in the next round.”